Scottish Ballet on Film: two new short, sharply-focussed intimate digital dance works – view this month on line
In 1982, International Dance Day was first celebrated marking the birthday of Jean-Georges Noverre (1727-1810), the creator of modern ballet. Each year, the 29th April is the day to encourage the cultural participation and education through dance events and festivals all over the world.
While the theatres remain closed, Scottish Ballet has not stored away the pointe or leotards in the wardrobe but during the past year, the dancers and creative team have been inspired to produce a series of inspiring new ballet films to view on line. At Christmas time, ‘The Secret Theatre’ was a magical festive treat for all ages.
To commemorate International Dance Day 2021, Scottish Ballet presents the world premiere of Dive choreographed by Sophie Laplane with James Bonas and Odyssey by SB soloist Nicholas Shoesmith.
Sophie Laplane was born in Paris and trained at The Conservatoire National Supérieur de Paris then joined Scottish Ballet in 2004 as a dancer until 2017 when she became Scottish Ballet’s Choreographer in Residence.
Dive is inspired by the French artist Yves Klein, whose controversial 1960s Anthropometry Blue Period series featured the body shapes of naked women smeared in his trademark IKB paint, imprinted on giant canvases.
From Schubert’s slow, solo piano chords, we see a ghostly figure lost in a frozen white Arctic landscape until, with an explosive blast of heavy metal, the scene is transformed into a vibrant shade of aquamarine.
This is a dreamscape fantasy world, in which dancers parade like a collection of moving statues, slide and skate over the icy ground and perform the Bossanova and Samba with sassy style. Unlike a stage performance, through the magic and illusion of film, there’s fast-paced scene shifting, frames freeze and time stands still.
Yves Klein’s abstract expressionistic conceptual art is vividly captured with a vivacious sense of freedom, surreal humour and bold painterly palette; cool choreography and creative vision to the final splash in this short, sharp, 12 minute movie.
Born in the UK, Nicholas Shoesmith trained at The Australian Ballet School and joined Scottish Ballet in 2012, promoted to Soloist in 2016. He was nominated in the National Dance Awards 2019 for his role as John Proctor in The Crucible.
Odyssey is an apt name for Shoesmith’s new work, which immerses the viewer into the interactive combat of video games. With a strident electronic sound track by Craven Faults and Squarepusher and strobe lighting, follow our heroic gamer as he dons his 3D headset to be teleported from the backstage of a theatre to the surreal world of Outer Space for close encounters of the third kind.
In the shadowy darkness, a swirling tribal dance ritual by aggressive, arm-whipping creatures, strange aliens in slinky, skin tight, black jumpsuits and helmet-headed beings from Saturn, Venus and Mars.
If you are a fan of such epic Sci Fi games such as Mass Effect, Halo, Portal et. al., this balletic tribute to virtual reality gaming will illustrate the intimate, dramatic experience through modern dance.
Scottish Ballet on Film
These two short, fresh, feisty digital dance works can be viewed on line as part of Scottish Ballet’s membership programme and available to watch until 31 May 2021.
To become a free member and to book complimentary tickets visit: https://www.scottishballet.co.uk